First Impressions: A Look Into the Sanford Pentagon
The initial outcry over ticket prices at the new Sanford Pentagon seemed to quiet on Thursday night. With a sold out crowd of 3,200 packed in to see the premier event between the Minnesota Timberwolves and Milwaukee Bucks, the Sanford Pentagon has already paid off over the old, outdated, Sioux Falls Arena.
For the same reason most people will still pay $8 for a movie ticket in an elite theater versus a $3 seat at a place you don't know if the chair will hold up, the comfort level of the Pentagon is next to none. For the price of $75 fans could sit within a few feet of the likes of Ricky Rubio, Kevin Love, and even former South Dakota State guard Nate Wolters.
In comparison, to sit as close to the court as the $75 seats, a person would have to pay $60 or more for seats at the Sioux Falls Arena for a Timberwolves game. Yes, $15 extra to sit in a better venue and with better amenities for fans.
The ticket price problem stopped once the fans entered the new Pentagon. Fans are initially greeted by a large concourse filled with team shops and concessions. To get to their seats, spectators travel down a hallway filled with a pictures of present day basketball to the days of the first game. At that point, they've entered Heritage Court.
"This facility turned out to be exactly what we wanted. We have a few things to work on for our future events, but I'm very happy with the way this turned out" said Eric Larson, General Manager of the Sanford Sports Complex.
Milwaukee Bucks Head Coach Larry Drew was impressed with the facility.
"Over my 30 yrs in the NBA, we've played in some non-NBA cities...but this is 1 of the best." - Larry Drew (Courtesy @MarkRemme)
In terms of future events, Larson says the T-Wolves were happy with the facility and that the hope is that this generates a buzz around the country.
"I just think we need to build on this and our goal has always been to take this and make it a regional and a national facility."
Even with an increase in ticket prices than the standard event at the Arena, fans will be treated to bigger games, entertainment, and acts with a place like the Sanford Pentagon.
The Pentagon is set to host a college basketball matchup between Wisconsin and St. John's on November 8th, and a women's college basketball event between the University of South Dakota and Drake on November 21st.
** YOU CAN EMAIL JERRY PALLESCHI AT JERRY@ESPN991 AND FOLLOW HIM ON TWITTER @JERRYSWORLD991 **